Why is carboplatin and vinorelbine prescribed?
Carboplatin and vinorelbine are a combination of two chemotherapy drugs. It is a treatment for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
Vinorelbine is in a class of medications called vinca alkaloids. It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells in your body. Carboplatin is in a class of medications known as platinum-containing compounds. It works by stopping or slowing the growth of cancer cells.
How should carboplatin and vinorelbine be used?
You will be given carboplatin and vinorelbine in the chemotherapy day unit. A chemotherapy nurse will give it to you.
The nurse will give you anti-sickness (anti-emetic) drugs before the chemotherapy. The chemotherapy drugs can be given through:
- a short thin tube the nurse puts into a vein in your arm or hand (cannula)
- a fine tube that goes under the skin of your chest and into a vein close by (central line)
- a fine tube that is put into a vein in your arm and goes up into a vein in your chest (PICC line).
Your nurse will give you vinorelbine as a drip (infusion) for about 5 to 10 minutes. After this, you will have carboplatin as a drip for 30 to 60 minutes. They usually run the drip through a pump. This will give you the treatment over a set time.
Some people may take vinorelbine as capsules by mouth.
Vinorelbine capsules should be taken at the same time as food. They must be swallowed whole with a glass of water. They should not be chewed, opened, or crushed. Take them on the same day of every week.
If you forget to take the capsules, you should take the missed dose as soon as possible within the same day. If a full day has gone by, let your doctor or nurse know. Do not take a double dose unless your doctor tells you to.
- Other things to remember about your capsules:
- Wash your hands after taking your capsules.
- Other people should avoid direct contact with the chemotherapy drugs.
- Keep them in the original package and store in a refrigerator (2 to 8 degrees C).
- Keep them safe and out of sight and reach of children.
- If you are sick just after taking the capsules, contact the hospital. Do not take another dose.
If your treatment is stopped return any unused capsules to the pharmacist.
What side effects can carboplatin and vinorelbine cause?
Carboplatin and vinorelbine may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
SERIOUS SIDE EFFECTS
If you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
In case of emergency/overdose
Contact your doctor or nurse immediately if you have signs of infection, including a temperature above 37.5C or below 36C.
What other information should I know?
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. Bring this list each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
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